A Contemporary Jungian Novel
or, The Death of the Old King
Michaela Kopp-Marx, PhD
Sunday, March 17, 2024, 11:00 am - 1:00 pm PDT (UTC - 7)
This program will be recorded and made available publicly on our YouTube channel
Starlite Terrace is the Los Angeles apartment building where four protagonists live in the eponymous novel by Patrick Roth. Over the course of a year, from June 2002 to June 2003, four residents - Rex, Moss, Gary, and June - tell their highly personal stories, centered on “average” people in or past midlife, whose thoughts, feelings and actions are influenced to a high degree by movies and the movie industry. In each of their singular collisions with life, a universal and mythical pattern is gradually revealed which gives these so-called ordinary people a dignity they have long since lost in everyday life. It is the narrator, a fifth protagonist as it were, who assembles their life shards into four “Hollywood individuation stories," as Roth calls them.
In this lecture we will deal with the first story of the book entitled “The Man at Noah’s Window.”
The first part of this program is about the novel itself, its highly Jungian worldview, its depth psychological approach to events and conflicts as they appear in the lives of the Starlite Terrace tenants. In the second part we will deal with Rex, “The Man at Noah’s Window,” an image of a man about to be hit by the onrush of the unconscious. We will take a closer look at certain themes and associated motifs as they unfold in the story, for example Rex’s lifelong search for “hands." In his case, it is a brilliant allegory for someone suffering from a father complex. We will also consider the significance of the window as a gateway to the world of the objective psyche and, finally, we will focus on the major themes of the flood and the divine storm that grip and transform Rex.
Purchase Starlite Terrace on Amazon
Michaela Copp-Marx, PhD, is a professor of Modern German Literature at the University of Heidelberg. From 1998 to 2018, she directed and organized the Heidelberg Poetics Lectureship. Her field of work and research is modern and contemporary literature, especially the interrelations between visual art, film, and literature (Rilke and Rodin: In Search of the True Way of Writing, 1999). Her interdisciplinary-hermeneutic approach led her to define the phenomenon of postmodernism through an analysis of typical procedures and aesthetic strategies in literature, architecture, and painting from the 1980s to the 2000s (Between Petrarch and Madonna:The Novel of Postmodernism, 2005). In addition to cultural-historical studies of the present, she is particularly interested in C. G. Jung’s analytical psychology, including the theory of archetypes and symbol theory in contemporary literature, especially in the work of Patrick Roth. In addition to interpretive essays and anthologies on Roth’s literature, she published an annotated new edition of the Christ Trilogy (Patrick Roth: The Christus Trilogy with a commentary by Michaela Kopp-Marx, 2017). She is in training as a Jungian analyst at the Research and Training Centre for Depth Psychology according to C. G. Jung and Marie-Louise von Franz in Zurich and is authorized to conduct control case analyses.
with commentary by Michaela Kopp-Marx,
Identify the symbols in “The Man at Noah’s Window” and the Jungian concepts they point to.
Define the term “father complex “ and explain how it is exhibited in the story.
Distinguish the archetypal image behind the personal experience in the story.
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